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A question of motives

Discussion in 'Off-Topic' started by Timsup2nothin, Oct 11, 2018.

?

So, where do you go?

  1. School A

    7 vote(s)
    46.7%
  2. School B

    3 vote(s)
    20.0%
  3. School C

    3 vote(s)
    20.0%
  4. Run away and wind up as a ball boy for a local arena football team.

    2 vote(s)
    13.3%
  1. Timsup2nothin

    Timsup2nothin Another drone in the hive mind

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    This is not a sports question, even though it might look like it at a glance.

    The premise is that you are a player of American football, coming out of high school. You have three college offers to choose from. To remove these as considerations we will assume up front that all three will offer you the same quality of education, in an equally attractive location, at an equal after scholarship cost. Your personal abilities as a player will also start the same, obviously, and less obviously will wind up the same no matter where you go.

    So what is the difference? It is not just a matter of expectations, it is a matter of me as the questioner being able to provide an absolute certainty about outcomes.

    If you choose school A, the team will be in competition for a National Championship every year, and you will in fact graduate four years later with a national championship ring of your very own. You will rise and fall on the depth chart, playing a third string role in the year of the championship, making occasional appearances on special teams throughout your four year career.

    If you choose school B, the team will be successful to a reasonable degree. They will win more than they lose, but never be mentioned as a contender for a championship. The high point of your college football career will be an invitation to the Aqua Velva Turtle Bowl in Podunk at the end of your junior year, where you will face off with another 8-4 team in a game recorded and shown after midnight on ESPN 2. You will rise and fall on the depth chart and make frequent game appearances, even getting a stretch as a starter due to a rash of injuries.

    If you choose school C, they are gonna suck. Your senior year, when they win four games, will be the high point where they win more games than in the three previous seasons combined. No championships, no invitations to bowl games, your team is among the teams that big name schools put on their schedule so they can demonstrate their ability to run up the score on a cream puff. You will rise rapidly through the depth chart, becoming a starter late in your sophomore season and holding that position through the rest of your college career. In your senior year you will be recognized as the bright spot in the darkness and credited as the biggest contributor in all four of those wins.
     
  2. Synsensa

    Synsensa Warlord Retired Moderator

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    I would go with School C, I think. My only real comparison model for this is hockey, and a lot of the phenoms came from completely trash teams. One is currently on a trash team while in the NHL (guess who!).

    Those four years might be kinda sucky but it'd be the best for your individual growth and future. Look to tomorrow instead of yesterday. A bit rich coming from me, but this is a question of ideals.
     
  3. Berzerker

    Berzerker Warlord

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    C - tis better to reign in hell than ride the pine in heaven
    B's a possibility if my time as a starter gets me drafted

    edit: A if no option gets me drafted, that championship ring sure is tempting :)

    now I got all 3 options on my wish list
     
  4. Timsup2nothin

    Timsup2nothin Another drone in the hive mind

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    I did mention that you are coming out with the same skills no matter where you go. So your position is based on differing notoriety giving you different prospects for a pro career. That could be argued either way. If someone is trying to be a walk-on with an NFL team a tiny bit of name recognition and some sort of "highlight reel" may add to their pitch, but flashing a national championship ring and saying "I played at Alabama" can probably give a similar opening.

    @Berzerker none of those paths are gonna get you drafted. You're a walk on, at best, and probably don't have the skills to be a successful walk on.
     
  5. bernie14

    bernie14 Filter Manipulator

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    Without thinking about it too much. I would say school a....better a small part of something great, than a large part of garbage

    EDIT: does anyone think that level of talent will get you to the nfl?
     
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  6. Lexicus

    Lexicus Warlord

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    I can't play American Football, so I voted for the joke poll option.
     
  7. Berzerker

    Berzerker Warlord

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    well rats, no NFL for me - still a tough choice between A and C, I'd probably take the ring
     
  8. Timsup2nothin

    Timsup2nothin Another drone in the hive mind

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    I should have noted that school B is the home of the Hoboken Hypotheticals.
     
  9. Synsensa

    Synsensa Warlord Retired Moderator

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    Oh, no chance of continuing on afterwards? Pointless to choose anything except A, in that case. I thought this would affect draft ranking for the professional league.
     
  10. Lexicus

    Lexicus Warlord

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    Alright I admit I was just rationalizing my joke for the vote option, but in all seriousness I have no idea which of the three I'd pick. Never have had any interest in a pro sports career.
     
  11. Hrothbern

    Hrothbern Warlord

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    C
    I actually made that choice in some comparable way twice in my volleybal career.

    I sticked too long at my original volleyball club where I started at 13, and when going to university choose the university team instead of the semi-profs of a big insurance company.
    My trainer of my first club played in the first team of that university club, I knew some people, and it was trained by the Dutch national team trainer.
    But that insurance team became indeed for many years the national champion.
    And as it happened it did not matter, because I had to quit it all because of two bad bicycle accidents. Bad for my knee.
     
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  12. bernie14

    bernie14 Filter Manipulator

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    Seems to me this reponse is one of "lack of awareness of oneself" and failure to prepare a plan b :undecide:
     
  13. Timsup2nothin

    Timsup2nothin Another drone in the hive mind

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    I think @bernie14 had a very clear argument for choosing School A, but I don't think just calling the other choices "pointless" is a good argument at all. Having personal accomplishments to look back on is not a complete zero. I was thinking that would outweigh the "be part of something great" aspect for some people.
     
  14. Synsensa

    Synsensa Warlord Retired Moderator

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    Mostly, my thinking is that toiling in mediocrity is worth it if there's a long-term payoff.

    If in this scenario it's certain that you won't be sportsballing after these four years at college, it'd be more beneficial to have a good time in the present. Being good on a terrible team won't translate to anything useful outside of the sport after you've graduated.

    School B could lead to the same result as School A but is more susceptible to ego. If you go up the depth chart and you have success, you're more likely to believe you can break the proverbial ceiling. You'll have the "What if?" to contend with.

    So School A is the safest, and best, choice simply because you'll never be the focus but you'll still be successful. You can enjoy what is, ultimately, a temporary activity without worrying about what it will do to your future or worrying about whether or not you could have had a bigger piece of the pie. It'll just be a fun extracurricular.
     
  15. Timsup2nothin

    Timsup2nothin Another drone in the hive mind

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    Are you thinking that being the acknowledged star of the team wouldn't be something that could be parleyed into "a good time in the present" just because the team is bad?
     
  16. GoodEnoughForMe

    GoodEnoughForMe n.m.s.s.

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    This sounds like a joke answer but it's not; School A, because football is really, really bad for your brain, and while I can't imagine myself playing it, I'd get all the cool campus perks of being on a bonafide championship team without the drawbacks of playing as much. I actually think B would be my least fav option given all that.
     
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  17. Timsup2nothin

    Timsup2nothin Another drone in the hive mind

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    This is a very legitimate concern. I have to wonder though if it is accurate. As a low end player in a national championship program your chances of getting your brains bashed in during practice might be high enough to offset what you gain by not playing much in the games. If you are a starter, or even better the star, you will be protected in practice.
     
  18. Synsensa

    Synsensa Warlord Retired Moderator

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    I've seen enough sports movies to know that everyone on a bad team is a miserable bastard.

    And I've certainly watched the danged Leafs enough. :(
     
  19. bernie14

    bernie14 Filter Manipulator

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    Short term goal? I could argue further that choices b and c would actually be pointess because statistically, the odds of getting into the nfl are quite remote and failure to recognize that or "basking in the sucess of mediocrity" are poor narcissistic exercises to boost self esteem...
     
  20. Timsup2nothin

    Timsup2nothin Another drone in the hive mind

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    As opposed to being (a recognizably irrelevant) "part of something great"? I mean, none of these options are about "in the long run I star in the NFL and make a billion dollars on my way to the hall of fame." And none of them are about "playing football in my college years will be the defining point for the rest of my life."

    Maybe you wear that national championship ring, or maybe you don't because when people ask about your playing days you don't want to lie and risk google but you don't want to say you got more splinters from the bench than bruises from playing. On the other hand, maybe somewhere along the arc of your life an alumnus in a position to give you a boost up recognizes your name, long after they have moved on from whether their alma mater was an athletics powerhouse. I could parley any of these situations into being beneficial, but heck, I once talked my way into a job by painting my prior experience as a felon and convict to advantage.

    I think, ultimately, the question is really about which poor exercise appeals more to one's particular flavor of narcissism.
     

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